Monday, 3 July 2017

Cherry hulk's search for Strawberries

Breakfast, followed by a quick get ready, containers found, ice blocks and cool box ready and off we went in search of Strawberries. We went to the same farm we have been to for the last three years. As it said it opened at 10am, we thought we would be there before the rush and before the hot heat of the midday sun. There were queues to park as soon as we got there and we were turned into a parking space, then moved and then walked probably a 1km to get our containers weighed. It was a beautiful day and would have been a nice walk had it not been for the awful driving and attempted parking by the millions turning up to do the same as us. We got our boxes weighed and then we saw the huge queue JUST to pay. Huffle thought it was possibly an hour's worth of queueing and we contemplated putting someone at the end of the queue before we even started picking but that seemed ridiculous. They just weren't coping with the amount of cars or pickers today. We decided to turn around and get back to the car as it was just silly. Driving back we saw that the queue to park had become 2km long and getting bigger by the minute. Plus an accident had happened while we were in there.

Our next stop was a farm slightly closer to home and was an Organic Farm I have always passed but never been in. We parked the car (again a busy place but not nearly as much as th previous one) and got our boxes weighed. We were asked if we had been there before. NO? Well this one charged $10 per person as a deposit so we had to pick a minimum of $50 worth of Strawberries. Well we hadn't even walked into the place yet and they were wanting to take $50 off us. We make enough jam to last us the year plus some for visiting family, friends and presents but still we don't pick that much! We said NO and turned around again.

Our last try was a farm we went to ages ago when were looking for a Maize Maze in the Autumn. This one was perfect. A small farm, not too many rows of strawbs, not too many people. We weighed (after first asking how they priced their pick your own. The lady was astonished at us being asked to pay $50 and she said she would give up farming before she would do that). They had raspberries which weren't ready yet but I think we will go there for them when it's time too. We ended up eating tons and brought home $31 worth. Possibly more than usual.

We came home, had lunch and then made a start on the jam making. Small and Smallest cut the fruit and counted the amount of cups we had. I measured the sugar and Moo stirred and explained to everyone a 'rolling boil'. We ran out of lemons and Small walked to the Beer Store for some but they didn't have any so Huffle went to the General Store for some. Smallest continued chopping and we ended up with three batches of jam making 21 jars, all different sizes. We also had some non jarred for ourselves for later. Once all the jarring and clearing up was done, we went off to the pool. The boys had already set up stuff up there and Small was already annoyed at Smallest for wetting him, not helping and generally being annoying!

Recipe: 5cups of strawberries chopped
7 cups of fruit sugar
1/4 cup lemon juice
Sachet of pectin
Heat strawbs lemon and pectin stir and mash till boil. Add sugar and stir till rolling boil. Boil for 1 minute.
(Sterilise jars and lids)

At the pool, there was a noodle war, bumper cars game and hide and seek. Huffle and I went in and made the fastest turnaround of homemade scones, jam and cream EVER which we all ate by the side of the pool. Then we went in again and forced Moo in too and we all played Hide and Seek. It was quite cool in there and the sun kept hiding behind clouds making it even cooler! We sat around for a bit while Smallest had his bath and Small played on his tablet.

Push her in!

We had a quick tea and then Huffle took Moo and Small to his practice where his team lost 12-3. They said the other team were horrible and laughing at Small's team for their lack of skill. Very naughty! Small got given his captain armband but it was too small to go over his shirt so it was hidden underneath! He played up front mainly today and got an assist.

Later in the evening we watched Life Swap. Very interesting.


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